Daddy-O: Burger joint opens, again, on Main Street | Art & Appetite
Last updated 11/11/2016 at Noon
There's something quintessentially American about the ’50s diner.
It is what it is: unambiguous, straightforward, wholesome, unpretentious, simple. Burgers, hot dogs and fries. Milkshakes and ice cream floats. It all harkens back to a simpler time.
Actually, I don't remember the ’50s. I wasn't born yet. But practically every woman I've ever dated has made me sit through the musical “Grease,” so I feel like I understand the basics.
There's a ’50s diner on Main Street in Edmonds that has opened, then closed, then opened, then closed again. Well, after a name change and a little tweaking of the menu, it's open again and rechristened bopNburger.
When you walk through the door, you might feel like you've been transported back into some sort of kaleidoscopic time warp. Standing on a checkerboard tile floor, you might notice the 1943 reproduction Wurlitzer jukebox flashing and playing old hits.
You might be taken in by the impressive collection of Coca-Cola memorabilia. If you happen to be a fan of the pop icons of that era, you won't be able to miss Marilyn Monroe, Betty Boop, Elvis, the Duke and James Dean, among others.
The place is festooned with chrome and Formica, with old-fashioned barstools lining the soda fountain counter. The overall impression is happy and fun. This would be a great place to bring kids and grandparents.
It's surprisingly affordable.
Using only fresh ingredients and organic beef, it's still less than a lot of fast food joints. A generous amount of hand-cut french fries or garlic fries are an option to accompany your burger, which you can customize with avocado and mushrooms for a small charge. The shakes and desserts are reputed to be excellent.
BopNburger is truly a family affair. A sketch of Sandy Bellingham’s mother adorns the cover of the menu. At 23, she worked as a waitress for the Circle Ann Roadhouse near Chicago. That’s where she met Sandy's father.
Sandy runs the counter while son Joey mans the kitchen. Joey's brother Michael pitches in from time to time, fixing just about anything that breaks and helping out with shakes when things get busy.
It doesn't hurt that the Bellinghams also own the Edmonds Bakery next door something you are reminded of the moment you bite into one of their burgers and notice that it might be the freshest hamburger bun you've ever tasted. The next thing you might notice is how nice and juicy the burger is.
In the minus column, the hamburger patty, or the bacon, or both, tended to be a little too salty for my taste.
Everyone’s tolerance for salt is different. I have a friend whose food knowledge and skill I very much admire, but she will copiously salt almost anything she orders before she even tastes it. I haven't added salt to a dish since 1984.
Still, I think this burger would benefit from a little less salt.
Some new developments with the latest and hopefully final iteration of this restaurant there's no longer table service; customers order at the counter. Meals are intended to be quick and casual. Beer is now available, including selections from Edmonds’ own American Brewing Company.
BopNburger can also be found on the Uber Eats app. For orders above $20 within the delivery area, delivery is free.
Although bopNburger is closed on Sunday and Monday, it is available for parties and events on those days. I can think of no better place to throw a ’50s-themed party.
Basically, bopNburger is a great deal, serving good, straightforward diner food in a happy, fun, friendly setting. It's ideal for kids, grandparents, and people who don't take themselves or their food too seriously.
Snooty people might not enjoy it.
Rating: 4.6 out of 5. Address: 414 Main St., Edmonds. Price range: $5-$6.50 for burgers. Phone: 425-582-0456.
James Spangler is the owner of Spangler Book Exchange in Edmonds and an aficionado of all things art and appetite. Do you know of a Snohomish County restaurant, art gallery or theatrical show worthy of a review? Call him at 206-795-0128 or email him at email@example.com.